Archive for September, 2013

Warner Bros., Village Roadshow Pictures, A&E Television Networks,

Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton, Isla Fisher, Jason Clarke, Adelaide Clemens, Callan McAuliffe, Amitabh Bachchan, Elizabeth Debicki

The story of ex-military man, now writer Nick Caraway (Toby Maguire), who becomes obsessed with rich young playboy Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) who is himself obsessed with lost love Daisy (Carey Mulligan) who is married to wealthy businessman Tom Buchannan (Joel Edgerton). The movie is basically the story of Gatsby as told by Nick who not only hangs out with him acting as sort of a houseboy for Gatsby who is writing a novel about the story as he sees it. He learns a lot more about this mysterious Gatsby, and where he came from and how he got where he is today. Meanwhile, Gatsby is after married Daisy at all costs which is destroying the empire he built for her.

This novel from 1925 by F Scott Fitzgerald is the basis of the story, which is remake of the 1974 telling of the story featuring Robert Redford which was a remake of the 1949 version starring Alan Ladd. Who knows if there are any other versions out there. I saw the 1974 version and really hated it. I also found it really hard to follow. This version is a bit easier to understand (or maybe I’m a lot more mature than I was in 1974 and able to catch the story this time), but I didn’t really like this movie at all. It’s funny, sometimes, how I’ve seen so many movies, but sometimes a movie will remind me of another movie, and later I found out it was done by the same person. This one, first of all, reminded me of Moulin Rouge which I absolutely hated as well. An old story with Bee Gees and Beatles tunes didn’t sit at all. Well, I hated the soundtrack of this film too as the songs made no sense with a story from 1925. Well, guess what, there’s a reason! It’s the same guy from Moulin Rouge as well as Romeo and Juliet (the DiCaprio one) that I literally could not watch. There are very few movies that I cannot watch, but that one was certainly one that I turned off.

So what was good about the film? Well, DiCaprio did a pretty good job of playing rich playboy Jay Gatsby who is a fake and is really, really shallow. This is right up Leo’s alley. Carey Mulligan was also pretty decent as Daisy. She also is a young spoiled brat who is not very deep either. Toby Maguire’s Nick, on the other hand, was awful. He was such a little love struck puppy dog that followed Jay around doing stupid mundane tasks for him, and taking it. I really hated this character, and I don’t think it fits the kind of guy Nick should have been at all. It also seemed like Nick loved Daisy throughout, but we never found out a bit of it. He gives us the puppy dog looks and stares, but it’s never addressed at all. I am ambivalent on Joel’s Tom, Daisy’s husband. On one hand is supposed to be the old money, respectable and dignified, but he went off his rocker a little too much. Gatsby’s mansion is beautiful. The Long Island setting is beautiful. But the set decorations and car chases are really cartoonish. It didn’t seem to fit at all. Finally, this has the feel of a modern story told about the Jazz age and the 20’s. But it was written at that time, so it was a contemporary story. Some people rave about this as the greatest American novel ever written. It’s kind of Dickens-ish in the way it preaches about honesty, wealth, the crimes of the rich against the poor, and the contrast between the rich people and the poor people. I suppose Dickens could easily have written this book.

All in all though, it’s a romance story most of all, so the real romantics will probably like it. Basically, I think there are lots of love stories to be told, and there wasn’t a screaming need to remake this 1925 novel once again. On one hand, I can never get enough versions of The Christmas Carol, but on the flip side, I think this is probably too many Gatsbys. If you do decide to give this a try (maybe cause you’re Leo fan, or remember the book fondly from your school days), be patient with the first half hour. It’s really the worst part of the film, and it does improve a bit the further along you go. But this is a long movie, nearly 2 1/2 hours, and personally I felt like I would like the 2 1/2 hours back to see something a lot more interesting that this was. At least now I know the story, but I’m not sure what I’m going to do with that knowledge. My honest opinion is to skip this one.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this movie:
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Author: EdG

There are currently No Comments ╗on this post.

Big Beach Films, Low Spark Films,

Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, Moises Arias, Nick Offerman, Erin Moriarty, Craig Cackowski, Megan Mullally, Alison Brie, Mary Lynn Rajskub

Joe Toy (Nick Robinson) is a young man does not appreciate his father’s (Nick Offerman) attempts to control his life. They lost their mother a while ago, and Joe just can’t seem to get over it. He feels like Dad treats him like a child, and he’s unhappy that Dad is dating a new woman, and he has a hard time at school. One of the bright spots is his best friend Patrick (Gabriel Basso) and a girl he’s into at school, Kelly (Erin Moriarty). When things boil over, Joe, Patrick, and another friend Biaggio (Moises Arias) run away from home to a clearing out in the forest where they construct a house, and decide to live all on their own. What follows is a dramatic story of the trials of growing up and trying to find your way on your own.

This was a very strong, but touching coming of age story. Joe has all the problems an adolescent shouldn’t have to deal with, but far to many do these days. He thinks his Dad is a fool, and Dad thinks the same of him, so the relationship between them is very strained. His friendship is all he has, and as that disintegrates, he heads for rock bottom. This is a funny film, with a lot of good gags, and a very stunning visual film as well. The story is in the relationships between Parents and Kids, Boys and Girls, and best friends. Each of the relationships is very well investigated and developed beautifully. This an R rated film for some of the language and mature themes, but is not very bad for mid to older teens. It’s appropriate for the 16 and above crowd, especially if shared with parents. This could be a good film to start discussions on lots of subjects that trouble teens today. I really enjoyed this story, and though many of the things were tough to watch, it was still worthwhile. Very well done, this is a winner.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this movie:
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Author: EdG

There are currently No Comments ╗on this post.

Aquarius Films,

Joel Edgerton, Teresa Palmer, Felicity Price, Antony Starr, Nicholas Cassim, Otto Page, Isabelle Austin-Boyd, Tina Bursill, Wayne Blair, Fiona Press, Phillip Hinton

Four friends head to Cambodia on a care-free vacation. Only three come back. The rest are very concerned about what happened to their friend, and they head back to find out the truth. But as they search through the clues, trying to piece together what happened, one secret after another is revealed telling a very, very different story of what happened there, and why, in this mystery thriller.

This indie film, is quite a suspenseful film. The locations in Cambodia are beautiful, although most of the film is done in Australia it seems. Joel Edgerton is a decent actor, but this isn’t the best script in the world. They tried real hard to build an action packed suspenseful story, but it fell kind of flat for me. Yeah, there are bad guys, and tons of secrets, twists and turns. But it isn’t enough to make me really into the story, and I just didn’t get invested in it very much. There was a lot of opportunity to build a good mystery here, but it came off much too bland and didn’t really connect. I wanted to get into this story, but I just couldn’t. For that reason, I can’t recommend it. I didn’t feel there was enough meat to make it worth the effort. There’s nothing worse than sitting down to a film for which you have high expectations, only to find yourself fidgeting half way through and wishing it would just end. Basically, there’s no moral here, and the ending is just not satisfying. Skip this one.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this movie:
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Author: EdG

There are currently No Comments ╗on this post.

Zentropa Productions, Zentropa International Sweden, Zentropa International K├Âln,

Trine Dyrholm, Pierce Brosnan, Kim Bodnia, Paprika Steen, Sebastian Jessen, Christiane Schaumburg-M├╝ller, Bodil J├Şrgensen

Ida (Trine Dyrholm) is a hairdresses who is just finishing up cancer treatments and about to head to Italy to attend her daughter’s wedding, walks in on her husband with the secretary of his work. She runs into Phillip (Pierce Brosnan) who is a mean boss, still suffering over the loss of his wife, who is also heading to Italy to attend the wedding of his son. When the two of them figure out they’re going to the same wedding, they form a kind of a bond, but once they arrive in Italy, everything that can go wrong seems to as things get worse and worse. This is charming romantic comedy.

I enjoyed this movie. The film is made in Denmark, and is done in a mix of languages with subtitles as needed. The comedy is reminiscent of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” in a way, but it pretty fresh. The engaged couple is really good, and the other side stories going on are really funny. Very similar to Mama Mia, but without the songs of ABBA, it’s a worthwhile film. The story is good, and the acting is really decent. It’s a decent script too, so all in all it’s an unusual movie. The locations in Italy are exquisite, and it’s actually pretty funny. I can recommend this movie if you’re a fan of romantic comedies. It’s well worth the price of a rental.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this movie:
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Author: EdG

There are currently No Comments ╗on this post.

Friland, Yellow Bird Films, Nordisk Film,

Aksel Hennie, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Synn├Şve Macody Lund, Eivind Sander, Julie R. ├ślgaard, Kyrre Haugen Sydness

Roger Brown (Aksel Hennie) is a corporate headhunter who lives way above his means. But he supports his lavish lifestyle by targeting his corporate customers to steal valuable paintings and replace them with cheap fakes. He’s got a hot one this time, but he misjudges the client he’s trying to rip off, which is a headhunter of a different sort. By risking all for the big score, Roger may be out of time in this action, adventure movie, filled with suspense.

This international thriller comes from Norway. It’s a decent attempt, and the story isn’t bad. The whole subject did not appeal to me greatly, hence the lower rating, but I do have to admit that for a Norwegian film, they didn’t do too bad. It’s got a lot of mystery and suspense around it, and a good amount of action. There is a romance story too, with the usual troubled marriage and conflict and trying to work it out, but the romance angle didn’t appeal much either. Basically it’s a challenge to read the subtitles, and to get into the story, but the movie is done well enough to be of interest for those who like this kind of film. All in all, it’s a middling effort, and only recommended for those who are interested in this type of movie.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rate this movie:
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Author: EdG

There are currently No Comments ╗on this post.